Wednesday, September 3, 2008

graduate athletic training studies: the switch

after many nights of wrestling in my bed with thoughts opposed to the study of oriental medicine, i have decided to go back the other way...study athletic training in graduate school.

during my junior year at oregon state i had the idea to begin research in concussion assessment and management protocols in taekwondo. through writing funding proposals, analyzing previous research, designing questionnaires and other documents used to collect data...i realized where my interest in learning and passion is.

after one year of studying the basic theory and other intermediate courses in oriental medicine, i have realized that the studies in OM may be vigorous....only if one approaches their studies in that way. graduate programs in oriental medicine are not the equivalent of a master's level education in comparison to other disciplines of study, whether it be english studies, history, biology, economics, human physiology or the like. in most graduate level programs of any study, students are expected to continue the skills of learning (studying text books, memorizing information) but to also critically review and analyze research and concepts. graduate students in "normal" graduate programs also are most likely expected to participate in research with department faculty or even design and conduct research of their own personal interests.

graduate OM programs on the other hand do not have this atmosphere and opportunity to explore at a higher level than undergraduate education.

with all this said, i have decided to continue graduate studies in athletic training and will be applying to a handful of graduate programs in athletic training and/or sports medicine. my future goal is to continue doing research (hopefully in taekwondo) and participate in the academic world of education at the university level. my desire is to be a faculty member at a university in south korea.

with the growing athletic training education community in korea, the opportunity to be apart of an athletic training education program is sprouting.

within the next few months i will be taking gre and the boc exam for athletic training....hope to do well.